If you suffer from ulcerative colitis, you’ll do just about anything to get relief from the cycle of cramping and bloody diarrhea that comes with the condition. Since there’s no cure for colitis, you’ll likely have to try several options before finding an effective, long-term solution.
The first course of action for colitis treatment is usually a combination of prescription drug therapy and changes to your diet. Your doctor will recommend medications to suppress your symptoms and keep your colitis in remission. He or she may also give you drugs to increase the amount of time between flare ups and reduce the severity when they do occur.
Along with drugs, you’ll also need to make changes to your diet. What you eat doesn’t cause colitis, but it can exacerbate symptoms. If you’re like many patients, you’ll find that a healthy and soothing diet reduces symptoms and promotes healing while getting you the nutrients your body needs.
The diarrhea you experience during flare ups will reduces your body’s ability to absorb proteins, fats, water, vitamins and carbohydrates. It’s important to include foods from all food groups in your diet, but you may need to cut out dairy, spicy foods or those high in fiber. To learn more about nutrition and colitis, watch this video from the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America.
While conservative approaches work for some with colitis, some people need a surgical option to alleviate colitis symptoms. During the procedure your entire colon will be removed. After the procedure, you’ll have no pain, bloating or diarrhea. However, you’ll have a new way to pass solid waste from your body.
The best way to manage your continence is through a Barnett Continent Intestinal Reservoir (BCIR). This procedure creates a pouch to collect waste from your intestines. Using a catheter inserted through a stoma on your abdomen, you drain the pouch several times a day. There’s no leakage and no embarrassing accidents to worry about. You’ll be able to maintain the same active lifestyle as before your colitis surgery.
While highly effective, the BCIR isn’t right for everyone and another type of ileostomy might be a better option. Learn more today by scheduling a consultation at the Center for Ileostomy Surgery.